Tag Archive | worship in spirit and in truth

Isaiah 42:18 ” Hear, you deaf; look, you blind, and see! “

We all spend our lives searching for it.  But when we’re confounded with it, we usually don’t like what we hear or see.  What is it you ask?  It’s the Truth.  The truth is sobering, straightforward, and serious.  It’s what we don’t want to hear or see, so instead, we play mind games with ourselves, pretending it doesn’t exist.  But the truth will remain the truth, regardless of what we want to think…and God is really good at revealing it to us.  What we have to do then… is accept it.

Job 21: 14-15 ” Yet they say to God, ‘Leave us alone! We have no desire to know Your ways. Who is the Almighty, that we should serve Him? What would we gain by praying to Him?’ “

So why is it that the world is not attracted to the things of God?  Instead of being drawn to Him, they’d rather say, “Go away!”  The answer can be found in Jeremiah 9:6 where it says, “You live in the midst of deception; in their deceit they refuse to acknowledge Me, declares the Lord.”  Our carnal nature tells us we are independent self-made people who don’t need anybody’s help.  Couple that with all the world’s misleading and deceptive ideas and it’s no wonder we would have no desire to worship God.  Deception tells me I’m the center of the universe…the Truth bears witness that I’m not…and I don’t want to admit that.

Psalm 118:5 ” In my anguish I cried to the Lord, and He answered by setting me free. The Lord is with me, I will not be afraid.”

For many, the bondage of fear stops us from being able to move forward with life.  We long to be liberated from the paralyzing emotions, but feel there’s little we can do to change.  But if we’ll take the time to study a few Scriptures, we’ll discover that God has already made the way for us.  It starts with this verse in Psalms.  When I cry out to the Lord, He answers by liberating me from the terror I’m going through…in other words, setting me free from its control.  And this freedom from fear can only be found in the truth of the Gospel.  For Jesus declares to us in John 8:32, ” If you hold to My teachings, you are really My disciples.  Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”  There can be freedom from doubt and fear, and it starts with the saving revelation of the Gospel Message.

Isaiah 5:20 ” Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.”

Even within my lifetime I’ve seen this huge shift of what we consider right and wrong.  And with the advent of mass media, the Internet, Snap-Chat, YouTube, and Hollywood…we see our societal mores slowly morphing into something our Great-grandparents would be appalled at.  But this blurring of ethical principles and practices didn’t happen overnight…for it relied on man’s pride,  rebellion and apathy to flourish.  So now we sit, so desensitized, we don’t even react anymore to what we know is wrong…but if we do, we’ll likely find ourselves being chastised for being intolerant and narrow-minded.    Job 24:13 warns of this Spiritual blindness…of evildoers who rebel against the light, who don’t know its ways or stay in its path.  I ask Heavenly Father, that we would be enlightened by Your Word, and that You would illuminate our minds with Your truth,  that we may be able to discern right and wrong correctly.  Amen.

Colossians 2:6-7 ” So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith s you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.”

Jesus says to us in John 15:4, “Remain in Me, and I will remain in you.  No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine.  Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me.”  For us,  this means being rooted and established in the truth of the Gospel and trusting in the Lord daily.  And from this will come a over-abundance of fruit in our life…of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (Galatians 5:22)

Isaiah 2:5 ” Come, O house of Jacob, let us walk in the light of the Lord.”

Walking in the light of the Lord is so much more than how we behave in Church…or what we say, or don’t say around the Pastor…or how we can quote Scripture at Bible Study.  No, walking in the light of the Lord is more a lifestyle…a way of life of putting others before ourselves, of speaking truth and wisdom in difficult situations, and of doing the right thing…even when no one else is looking.   Rather, walking in the light of the Lord is manifesting the enlightenment of the knowledge of God into everyday living for His glory.

Genesis 1:3-4 ” And God said, ‘Let there be light,’ and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and He separated the light from the darkness.”

The diversity between bright sunshine and complete darkness is a stark contrast.  In bright sunshine, we can walk confidently, even in unfamiliar terrain, for we can see the path we’re following and the obstacles around us.    But when it’s total darkness, we struggle to make our way…stumbling, falling, and lurching along…fearful of the next step.  Isaiah 42:16 speaks of this, “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth.”  Allow the God of light to illuminate your path today with truth and wisdom.

II Chronicles 33:16-17 ” Then he restored the altar of the Lord and sacrified fellowship offerings and thank offerings on it, and told Judah to serve the Lord, the God of Israel. The people , however, continued to sacrifice at the high places, but only to the Lord their God.”

God had been very specific to Moses on where and how to sacrifice offerings to Him. (Leviticus 17:3-5)  But the people had fallen into the habit of worshiping at the high places of false gods instead…and it became Israel’s pitfall.  Even King Solomon became too comfortable and apathetic about where he worshiped God…for it tells us in I Kings 3:3, “Solomon showed his love for the Lord by walking according to the statutes of his father David, except that he offered sacrifices and burned incense on the high places.”  By using the altars of false gods, the Jewish people were unwittingly incorporating and melding deceptive ideology into their worship of the one true God.

Ephesians 6:14 ” Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist…”

It tells us here to stand fast against the enemy, but unless you’ve prepared for battle ahead of time, the enemy will  have you for lunch.  The belt of truth is that solid foundation of doctrinal knowledge of God’s Word…It’s His unshakable, unchangeable, everlasting truth that we need to gird  our heart, soul, and mind with.   Our belt of truth also holds all our weapons in place around our waist… weapons that are always at the ready.  Finally, this belt of truth  girds us with the power and authority of Jesus Christ to stand firm against anything the enemy throws at us.

I John 2:10-11 ” Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble. But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness; he does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded him.”

I love nightlights!  I’ll admit I have at least 8 spread throughout the house, casting their subtle radiance so I won’t trip and fall in the dark.  God’s truth is like a nightlight into our darkness…showing us His way so we won’t stumble.  But when we choose to not live by the light of His truth, we are easily deceived and blinded by lies that only foster hatred and distrust against our fellow-man.  When we love one another, the light of God’s truth illuminates situations, obstacles, and personalities for what they really are…exposing hurting hearts and revealing with honesty how we’re more alike than different.